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Knowing and obeying

And we can be sure that we know him if we obey his commandments. If someone claims, “I know God,” but doesn’t obey God’s commandments, that person is a liar and is not living in the truth. But those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him. That is how we know we are living in him. Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did. 1 John 2:3-6

Belief and behavior have direct correlations in the life of a Christian. This principle was emphasized in the Scriptures. The one who claims having knowledge of God should manifest such relationship through obedience in God’s commands. From the text, John tells believers they can know if they are in Christ through their willingness to obey His word. The test of having a genuine relationship with Jesus is connected in how willing we are to live by in accordance with His commandments. Apparently, the people to whom John wrote the epistle claimed to know God yet no effort was shown to keep God’s commands. The Bible is not advocating that we become perfect by obeying God’s commands for this is not possible while we are still here on this earth. “If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth” (1 John 1:8). The issue is whether or not we take God’s commands seriously. We will not live our lives disregarding His commands. This is why John ends chapter 2 of the text that those who claim to be the children of God should pursue righteousness for this is what set them apart as His followers. “Since we know that Christ is righteous, we also know that all who do what is right are God’s children” (1 John 2:29). Living this life of obedience to God is a result of having Christ’s righteousness in us. This is what it means to live our lives for Christ. It is God’s high calling for His children and He knows this life is possible through His Spirit living in every believer. “And we know he lives in us because the Spirit he gave us lives in us” (1 John 3:24). Jesus Christ came into this world so that everyone that believes in Him and places their trust that He alone can save will truly experience His life living in them “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:4-5, NIV). Paul’s admonition to the believers in Corinth is also God’s admonition to us if we claim we are His children; “Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves” (2 Corinthians 13:5).


Noel De Guzman

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